Thinking about moving after retirement? Discover insights to help you make an informed choice. Embrace a fresh beginning. Learn more.
We’re tied to our homes by a combination of necessity, preference, and habit. And for many of us, careers have been a major influence on where we live.
As you enter retirement, you’re untangling yourself from the need to live near a workplace or business network. Even work-from-home-ers can let go of living within country borders or with the connectivity or home office space previously required.
Instead, you can choose where you want to make a home based on what’s important to you—climate, culture, family, cost of living, and more. With all this in mind, let’s dive into the pros and cons of moving after retirement.
Is moving after retirement right for you? There are benefits and costs on either side of the equation, but going through the process of making a decision can lead to satisfaction that you end up in the right place during your retirement years—whether that’s across the globe or somewhere in the United States.
Ready to pack it up? Moving after retirement can provide:
You’ll want to gather your resources and take it step by step if you’re navigating how to plan for retirement. It will take:
Whether it’s a Phoenix sunshine community or a cabin in the mountains of Montana, it’s time to brainstorm every place you’ve imagined living. Was there a vacation spot you fell in love with in South Carolina? Did you grow up in Fort Worth and now miss your hometown? A town 1,000 miles away where your grandchildren are growing up?
If you’ve lived in one state for many years, there are likely many conditions and “this is how we do it” factors that you don’t give a thought to. While you’ll be able to find a McDonald’s in any of the locations on a wish list, you may want to look into:
Florida retirement communities are nothing to scoff at—and there are concrete reasons why seniors flock to the land of flamingos. In addition to its warm weather, beaches, and entertainment venues, the state offers:
Florida isn’t the only state that favors retirees. When you’re comparing possible destinations, look at:
Note some of these factors are state- or country-specific, but many vary based on community size and location: whether you’re in a rural area, small town, suburb, or big city of the United States.
When you weigh the pros and cons of moving after retirement, money is often among the top considerations. It can go in either direction—if you move to a desirable coastal town, big city, or resort-level senior retirement community, your checkbook will need to cover higher monthly bills.
On the other hand, you can lower those bills by moving to a less populated area, a state with a tax structure that benefits seniors, and a town that balances available services with a lower cost of living.
In June 2023, a half-gallon of milk would’ve cost you $2.56 in New York City versus $1.20 in Kalamazoo, Michigan.2 In other words, the number of dollars it takes to cover your monthly costs—groceries, gas, utilities, etc.—can more than double based on location.
If you’re moving while working, then (hopefully) the salary difference balances out cost of living. On a fixed retirement income, however, it’s critical to take prices into account.
Check out a cost of living calculator to see how far your income will go in different cities compared to your current location.3
Now, you may be asking: Should I sell or rent my house when I retire? Moving after retirement usually means putting a For Sale sign in your yard, but you may want to consider renting out your property instead. On the plus side, renting can:
Silver linings, however, come with clouds. Renting can also:
If you have experience with rental homes and someone you trust in mind to manage your property, you might lean toward renting instead of a sale. Renting a home is a great move when financially planning for retirement. Either way, do the math carefully before making a decision and consider:
Leaving behind a work life that’s taken up a huge chunk of your waking hours and crafted part of your identity is jarring. Even if you’ve been saving and looking forward to your golden years, that much change is a challenge.
Retirement itself can be a one-stop smorgasbord of emotional ups and downs, and moving after retirement opens up another potential stressor. Just as with your physical and financial health, plan on taking care of your emotional health as you start out.
Starting from scratch may be daunting, but with effort and intention, you can create new ties. Plan to:
Luckily, we’re in a peak era for staying connected virtually. There are online meeting platforms you can use at no cost in addition to old-school phone, mail, and email. You may want to:
While it does require time and effort, the pros and cons of moving after retirement shouldn’t come down to the exhaustion of a move. Take it one small step (or drawer) at a time:
There are several popular methods of organizing and reducing your belongings—have you used an item in the last year? Is it in line with your values? Does it bring you joy? When it comes to downsizing into a smaller home, you will want to declutter and simplify your belongings.
However you proceed, consider:
Moves can be tricky to time right, and after preparing to list and show the home with remodeling and redecorating, you’ll still need energy to handle the packing, closing, and moving end of the to-do list.
Truehold's sale-leaseback can reduce your chore list and provide maximum flexibility for planning your new adventure. Instead of the weeks or months of work and uncertainty from a traditional sale, you can expedite a sale closing directly with us. Unlock your wealth and start using your home equity for retirement.
The “leaseback” part of sale-leaseback means that you’ll be able to take your time before moving out—whether that’s an extra few months or counted in years—by remaining in your home as a renter.
After closing, we’ll handle the cost and work of essential maintenance and repairs, property tax, and homeowner’s insurance. That frees you up to focus on your dreams, take your time deciding on what to do with belongings, and move exactly when you’re ready to go.
When you’re ready to review the process and see if Truehold's sale-leaseback option fits your financial picture and goals, give us a call and one of our expert advisors will connect with you.
1. USAFacts. Our Changing Population: Florida. https://usafacts.org/data/topics/people-society/population-and-demographics/our-changing-population/state/florida/
2. Top10.com. Top 10 Most & Least Expensive States for Grocery Shopping in the US. https://www.top10.com/meal-delivery/top-10-most-and-least-expensive-states-for-grocery-shopping
3. Sperling’s Best Places. 2023 Cost of Living Calculator. https://www.bestplaces.net/cost-of-living/
4. Eldercare Locator by the Administration on Aging (AoA). Area Agencies on Aging. https://eldercare.acl.gov/Public/About/Aging_Network/AAA.aspx
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